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The St. Lucia Stars must be wondering at this point in time how they are ever going to stop this run of losses which now stretches back to 2016. They had their chances in the last two games but could not capitalize. Three losses from three games have put them under tremendous pressure and they need to find something special from their players very soon. Their opponents are the Trinbago Knight Riders, defending champions and the pre-tournament favorites. Two losses in their last two games have left the Knight Riders a little jittery as well. They would not want to take the Stars lightly and crash to a third straight defeat.
Things look dire for the St. Lucia Stars and they are fast becoming a joke in the region but we believe they are far closer to a win than they have been in quite some time. The Stars have a decent top-4 that can potentially win them matches.
David Warner is having a poor tournament but we would not on him going the entire tournament without a significant score. He has the quality and the ability to win a match when he gets going. It could be against the Trinbago Knight Riders as well.
His opening partner, Andre Fletcher, hit some form in the last game and scored an aggressive 33. We don’t particularly rate Fletcher very highly but there is no denying the fact that he can be very destructive. Perhaps the most important player in this lineup right now in Lendl Simmons.
He has shown good form in the last two matches but has been unable to go on to score a really big one. If Simmons, Warner, or even Pollard can get their act together then the ST. Lucia Stars will end up with a big score.
Below these four, some good players like Darren Sammy and Mark Chapman are also present. Chapman has been out for a duck in his last two innings and would be under pressure to keep his spot. It is easy to see him being replaced by someone like Niroshan DIckwella when he joins the squad after completing his international commitments.
The bowling is a concern. McClenaghan is currently the only bowler that looks dangerous for the Stars. Hidge bowls fast left-arm spin that may or may not come off, Qais Ahmad looks a little raw, Keiron Pollard is a shadow of what he was a few years ago, and Kesrick Williams can be quite inconsistent as well.
This is a bowling attack that needs the help of a large score from the batsmen.
ADS Fletcher , David Warner, LMP Simmons, Kieron Pollard, Chandrapaul Hemraj, DJG Sammy, MJ Mcclenaghan, Qais Kamawal, Kavem Hodge, Rahkeem Cornwall, Obed McCoy.
The Trinbago Knight Riders have played three matches this season and only won the one they played against the Stars at the beginning of the tournament. After that, they witnessed Andre Russell steal a game from within their grasp and succumbed to an excellent performance by the Patriots.
The Caribbean Premier League does not allow for too many mistakes to be made and can quickly become an uphill task for teams that lose form midway. All the sides are pretty closely matched and so keeping the winning momentum going is essential.
A team that is blessed with talent that the Knight Riders have is always going to be a contender. Chris Lynn at the top is looking in good touch but has yet to really take off. He could find the struggling Stars attack very much to his liking.
For some reason, the Stars insist on opening with Sunil Narine even when they have a whole bunch of other options. Narine has not been successful up until now, with the bat or with the ball. He is a very important member of the Knight Riders bowling attack and needs to find his groove soon.
The middle order of Munro, McCullum, Darren Bravo, Ramdin, and Dwayne Bravo is brilliant. There is plenty of power, experience, and a proven ability to close out matches. Colin Munro has been brilliant in the opening three matches and has scored runs in every inning.
If one of the other batsmen can give him some support then the Knight Riders could be looking at a big batting performance from its side.
The Knight Riders were very poor with the ball in their last game. Dwayne Bravo, Shannon Gabriel, and Kevon Cooper went for a lot of runs and allowed the batsmen to just rotate the strike off the other bowlers.
Ali Khan has been brilliant this season and is the find of the season, no doubt. If Narine and Fawad Ahmad can find some turn off the surface then this bowling attack could become much more impressive.
Chris Lynn, SP Narine, Colin Munro, Brendon McCullum, Darren Bravo, Denesh Ramdin, Dwayne Bravo, J Searles, Ali Khan, Fawad Ahmed, Shannon Gabriel.
The team winning the toss is likely to field first
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The forecast for match day is not too promising at the moment. A lot of rain has been predicted on match day and showers are expected to continue for the entire duration of the day. Hopefully, the weather in the islands will lift and allow a result to be arrived at. A truncated match is very likely.
The Stars have never beaten the Knight Riders up until now and we don’t think they are going to begin in this match either.
Back the Trinbago Knight Riders to win.